End of the World Aftermath: Live-Blogging the “Apocalypse”

1:14 AM – It’s current 6:14 PM in Tonga.  If Family Radio were correct, we’d expect to hear reports of Raptured Tongans.

1:19 AM – This is a bit surreal.  The East Coast station is running a program about heart health, and how to reduce your cholesterol.  Meanwhile, the West Coast station is playing an apparently pre-recorded program “showing” how Scripture proves the end times. So far, the speaker is hammering the fact that Biblical “days” sometimes means “years.”  True enough, but it’s hard to see why it always means years.  I’m incredulous at the number of assumptions built into their model “proving” the end times mathematically.  But what’s stranger than that has to be the heart health program.

1:25 AM – Two comments already!  It’s nice to see how Christopher and Fr. Strobl are spending what may or may not be their last night on Earth.  On a more serious note, it occurs to me that there are some folks who really will die today.  A lot of them, just as there are every day.  I hope that those people prepared themselves as seriously as if the world were truly going to end.

1:32 AM – From Twitter:

Rapture prank: On Saturday, take some of your unwanted clothes and shoes and leave sets of them arranged on sidewalks and lawns around town.

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Writer claims end of the world guy (Mr. Camping) got his idea from (gasp) a Jesuit!

The modern interpretation of the prophecies in Daniel and Revelation is that they are coded references to contemporary politics and all the tyrants, harlots and horned beasts in them are long since forgotten dust. But prophecy is much more fun. By close study of the Book of Daniel, the Spanish Jesuit Francisco Ribera further invented the doctrine of the Rapture. This breaks the last judgment into two parts – first the real Christians are swept up into heaven, then the bad stuff happens to the rest of us.

Since this was a Jesuit doctrine, it was completely unacceptable to Protestants until the 19th century, when it was republished by another Jesuit, writing pseudonymously as a rabbi. From Jewish sources, it made perfect sense to Edward Irving, a fashionable Scottish preacher in London in the 1820s. By the 1830s his congregation was speaking tongues and prophesying and claiming miraculous healings, like an early version of Holy Trinity Brompton.

From there the doctrine crossed the Atlantic. William Miller, a Baptist minister in upstate New York, decided that when the Book of Daniel said “Unto two thousand and three hundred days; then shall the sanctuary be cleansed”, it obviously meant 2,300 years; and by “the sanctuary being cleansed” it obviously meant the return of Jesus: all he had to do was to establish the date from which Daniel was counting, and all would be ready.

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Editor’s note: Based on the plethora of recent news stories about apostate Jesuits from all around the world, I’ve come to a “working conclusion” that when the prophesied Anti-Christ is truly revealed, he will very likely be a Jesuit.

Father Longenecker: Underlying both Mr. Camping’s bizarre prophecies and women’s ordination is the same quicksand of private interpretation and private revelation.

A group of Christian individuals becomes sincerely and truly convinced of a particular belief or a particular devotion or a particular practice, and what authority on earth is able to make the call as to whether they are right or wrong?

Either there is such an authority or there is not. If there is not, then anything goes, and whatever your sincere opinion is about religion, it is nothing more than a sincere opinion and yours is really just as valid as the next person’s.

The Camping-ites or Mennonites, Anglicans or Adventists, Mormons or Methodists, Lutherans or Snake Handlers, Church of God or Assemblies of God or Church of Christ or Disciples of Christ or Christian Disciples or the Four Square Worldwide Church of God or Christian Science or….

Or then there is the Catholic Church.

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End of the world set for this Saturday – May 21, 2011

Read all about it here

Some questions …


Q: Some questions …
OK i have heard, on judgement day we will be judged, but then i have also heard we have already been forgiven and we wont be judged we will be judges and God will ask us to participate in judgement i dont understand, im trying to but im confused and two, do you have to be baptized, because in one of the verses it says that you should be baptized, by water no one will enter the kingdom of heaven if he is not reborn i need help understanding this. And tell me about the rapture.

A: There is no divine judgment for sins that have already been duly forgiven by God.

And while God may forgive those who apologize to him and who repent of their sins, the only Christians who absolutely know for sure that they’ve been forgiven (while still alive, here on earth) are Catholics, since Jesus gave the Catholic Church alone the power to forgive sins when he instituted the sacrament of reconciliation, as his very first official act, after he raised himself up from the dead.

That this was obviously on his mind as Jesus departed his tomb should give you an indication of how much Jesus wanted us all to have the grace and the peace of mind that absolute forgiveness of sins can truly provide.

Unfortunately, non-Catholics will have to wait until Judgment Day to find out if they’ve been forgiven (or not) and that typically means that they will indeed be judged.

Regarding baptism … It was absolutely clear, for the first 1500 years of Christianity that baptism was typically required for salvation, and that baptism was “the door” to the church, and to all that the church had to offer, for the care of souls.

And while the protestant reformers had some valid disputes with the Catholic church and the way the clerics were running things (just as we still do today) nothing has ever successfully challenged the truth and the consistency of Catholic doctrine, since it comes directly from Jesus and the apostles, and so cannot be refuted.

The bottom line on baptism is this: Why would anyone take a chance with their own salvation by forgoing baptism, when it’s so easy and so simple to get baptized … especially when we have Jesus’ personal example in the matter .. as well as his great commission … neither of which leaves room for any doubt about the critical necessity of baptism?

As for the rapture: Until about 200 years ago, absolutely no one even mentioned the possibilty of a “rapture” that might pluck Christians out of the world, prior to the return of Jesus Christ.

Catholics and most other Christians still think the idea of the “rapture” is pure bunk … since God has always demonstrated his ability to save his people, while they remain planted firmly here on earth.

The critical thing to understand about the end times is that the antichrist comes first, claiming to be God, and deceiving the world, then 7 years or so of trouble follows, culminating in the return of the real Jesus, with all the angels and all the saints, who finally put Satan and all his minions in hell, leaving the rest of us to get on with eternity, in the presence of God.

I hope this has been helpful.